Featuring John Minor
Last week was kind of special to me, John and his wife Becky who made a trip through Europe, would stop in Belgium to meet. Well we did meet at Monday evening for a small talk about what we would do the next 2 days, a regular survey day on Tuesday and some sightseeing on Wednesday.
A last minute call from Gwen, one of our engineers at the office in Ghent, made us start in Gentbrugge to survey a terrain near the freeway for the design of storm water holding basins. It's an enlargement of a survey we did in June. So we leave Kortrijk at 7.30 am. as usual to arrive in Ghent half an hour later. First we search for an existing station setup point, a large spike in the pavement, and we'll RTK some new points that will serve as station points for the S6. The terrain is a grassy plain, with a ditch around it surrounded by trees and canopy.
Perfect for a 2 man crew, John will do the elevation grid with the RTK-GPS on the open space, I'll take the S6 for the ditch. We talk a little about the Flemish FlePos VRS-system and our coding system.
It takes us a little more than 2 hours to complete it. We head SW to Ieper (Ypres) for a new project, a new sewage and storm water will be designed. I start hammering the spikes for the station setups, John has to get used to our tripod, he's used to the bi pod, one of the little things we do different.
but there's a lot in common no matter where you're surveying it seems ... people come and like to hear what en when it's going to happen.
Here's John in front of one of the WWI military cemeteries, you'll find a lot of them here, Ypres was on the front line for years. All cemeteries are surrounded by the same brick wall, we have a lot of tourists visiting these places, people from everywhere come looking for their forefathers who gave their lives for our freedom...
There's some time left to start the actual line coding ... John tells me we're doing an Alta survey, we call it a topo over here. Each one has it's own typical coding, we love ours, we add a lot of notes (house numbers, street names, names of shops and pubs, types of prefab curbs and gutters) All the extra info is available to the designers in the drawing.
We end the day with beer and a coffee in the tearoom near a musee in Kortrijk. On Wednesday we visit the medieval city of Bruges with the wives and our daughter.
A lot of time to talk about surveying and other things. Meeting and teaming up with a colleague surveyor from another part of the world was a fine and very intense experience, not only speaking about surveying but also about friendship and family life.